Ask just about anybody about the state of U.S. manufacturing and you'll likely get a response along these lines: "We lost all those jobs to China and Mexico." "We don't make anything anymore.""We're a service economy now; our kids aren't going to grow up to be factory workers."
That's apparently what passes for conventional wisdom today. It should probably come as no surprise. Media reports constantly reinforce the notion that the U.S. economy has entered the postindustrial age, where business is no longer connected to the making of things. And it's not just the media. Schools across the country have replaced industrial education with tech ed classes that focus on the Internet and other innovations of the digital age. Our own government turns a blind eye to the manufacturing sector: When was the last time you heard a politician mention the country's industrial base—let alone praise its accomplishments or propose legislation that would help U.S. industry?
All that helps to explain why so many people now believe that we are no longer a leader in manufacturing—and, perhaps more incredibly—that it's a good thing. But that flies in the face of reality. Consider the following:
So U.S. manufacturing is alive and well, and still leading the pack in many areas. You might want to let a politician or a teacher in on the news.